In a 7-2 decision, the Supreme Court struck down Arizona’s Proposition 200, a law that would require immigrated citizens to provide documented proof of their citizenship before being able to vote, affirming the appellate court’s ruling.

The legislation had seen bipartisan opposition during its lifetime and far exceeded federal standards that required citizens to identify themselves before voting. Voters are required to be citizens to participate in a federal election and those seeking to participate in an election must swear they are American citizens under penalty of perjury. States are welcome to adapt federal forms, but the state’s adapted form’s requirements must be equivalent to the federal form.

Arizona’s Proposition 200 required voter-registration officials to reject applications for registration to vote in cases where the applications were not accompanied by documentation that proved the applicant was a citizen of the United States.

Justice Antonin Scalia delivered the opinion of the Court. Justices Thomas and Alito dissented; Justice Thomas held that states have the authority to determine the validity of a potential voter’s application to register to vote. The full text of the opinion can be found here.

Born of controversy in an environment of change, Proposition 200 is anecdotal of the ongoing national dialogue regarding immigration in the United States. Proponents of the legislation claimed that Arizona suffers from a very costly problem of illegal immigrants participating in federal elections. Opponents claimed that the law was too sweeping in its reach, too broad in its scope, and would unjustly prevent thousands of citizens from voting even though they were eligible.

While Arizona’s increased voter registration requirements may be excised for now, the Court expressed that the state has alternatives to pursue should it still want to increase its voter registration requirements. In the Court’s opinion, Scalia explains that the form is developed in consultation between state and federal officials. If the state would like to see new standards included in the federal form for Arizona, it may petition the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) to change the form. Should that fail, it may take the matter of the EAC’s decision to court and keep fighting to keep immigrants from voting.

Joshua is a writer and researcher with Ring of Fire.